A successful business requires good communication. Without good internal communication processes, work can significantly slow down or even come to a halt. If you want to keep your business running smoothly, you need to examine its internal communication processes, looking for any common communication problems that could bring it down.
Using the Wrong Methods
You need to use the method of communication that is most appropriate for the kind of information being disseminated. While emails are appropriate for minor details of day to day operations, they do not suffice for important changes to the workplace. When big changes are coming up, you need to make sure that everybody understands, and is on board with them. This requires face to face meetings
Sending the Wrong Amount of Information
One of the most common communication problems in the business world is sending the wrong amount of information. On the one hand, the sender might believe that a lot of what he or she is sending is common knowledge when, in fact, it isn’t.
This leads to important communications that do not contain the necessary information, or that are impossible to understand. On the other hand, the sender might believe in being thorough with his or her communications, leading to far too much information being sent. This can cause important information to be difficult or impossible to find. Giant walls of text can lead to employees and managers giving up on even trying to read it.
Sending Information Out too Late
It is never a good idea to delay the sending of necessary information in an attempt to make It as complete and up to date as possible. This can not only delay projects, but it can also cause them to go off the rails when employees start working on them without the proper instructions. If the necessary communiques cannot be sent out in time, the relevant projects should be delayed. If they cannot be delayed, then whatever information is available must be sent out at once, with a note to expect further updates.
Using Ambiguous or Uncommon Terminology
Not everybody in your company knows the same things. Make it a policy to either use common terminology or explain any terms that are not common knowledge. Also, important communications need to be checked by outsiders, people who are not involved in their creation. This prevents ambiguous terminology from confusing the rest of the company.
Ban Cellphones at Meetings
You should only be holding meetings to communicate important information. This means that everybody needs to be focused and paying attention. This will be impossible if some people are constantly sending and receiving calls and texts. Have a policy requiring your employees to either leave their phones in their offices during meetings or turn them off.
Poor communication can kill your company. Take the time to examine communications between departments, between employees, and between management and employees, and out any potential problems before they become major disasters.